August 31

What was advertised in a colonial American newspaper 250 years ago today?

Aug 31 - 8:31:1770 New-Hampshire Gazette
New-Hampshire Gazette (August 31, 1770).

“Watches will be well repaired, Clocks put in good Order.”

It was the first advertisement that watchmaker Nathaniel Sheaff Griffith placed in the New-Hampshire Gazette in more than two months.  On the last day of August 1770, he inserted a brief notice stating that he “HEREBY informs the Public, that he has removed to s Shop between the two Taverns, Foss and Tiltons, where Watches will be well repaired, Clocks put in good Order, in the best Manner.”  Griffith struck a different tone in this advertisement than the last one he published.  Previously, he devoted a much longer advertisement to insulting competitor and rival watchmaker John Simnet, who was “as great a Watch-Maker as he is a Mountebank,” according to Griffith.  In turn, Simnet placed a trio of advertisements that pilloried Griffith.  Those notices went unanswered.

Griffith did not return to the public prints while Simnet remained in New Hampshire.  Perhaps he knew that his cantankerous rival planned to call it quits in Portsmouth and relocate to New York.  If that was the case, Griffith may not have considered it worth his effort to prolong a feud with a competitor who was headed out of town, even one who had been as abusive as Simnet had been during the eighteen months that he worked in New Hampshire and placed advertisements in the local newspaper.  Indeed, Simnet began advertising in the New-York Journal a week before Griffith once again placed a notice in the New-Hampshire Gazette.

For Daniel Fowle and Robert Fowle, the printers of the New-Hampshire Gazette, this meant less revenue generated from advertisements related to the conflict between Griffith and Simnet.  It also meant that they lost content that previously helped fill the pages and quite likely entertained readers who enjoyed watching the altercation between the watchmakers.  The last time Griffith and Simnet placed advertisements in the same edition of the New-Hampshire Gazette, they conveniently appeared one after the other in order to better craft a narrative for readers.  Anyone who regularly read that newspaper would have already been familiar with the ongoing squabble that played itself in the public prints.  Life may have become more placid for Griffith after Simnet’s departure, but reading the New-Hampshire Gazette also became a little less interesting for anyone who enjoyed witnessing the bickering and creative taunts between the watchmakers.

Slavery Advertisements Published August 31, 1770

GUEST CURATOR:  Chloe Amour

The Slavery Adverts 250 Project chronicles the role of newspaper advertising in perpetuating slavery in the era of the American Revolution. The project seeks to reveal the ubiquity of slavery in eighteenth-century life from New England to Georgia by republishing advertisements for slaves – for sale, wanted to purchase, runaways, captured fugitives – in daily digests on this site as well as in real time via the @SlaveAdverts250 Twitter feed, utilizing twenty-first-century media to stand in for the print media of the eighteenth century.

The project aims to provide modern audiences with a sense of just how often colonists encountered these advertisements in their daily lives. Enslaved men, women, and children appeared in print somewhere in the colonies almost every single day. Those advertisements served as a constant backdrop for social, cultural, economic, and political life in colonial and revolutionary America. Colonists who did not own slaves were still confronted with slavery as well as invited to maintain the system by purchasing slaves or assisting in the capture of runaways. The frequency of these newspaper advertisements suggests just how embedded slavery was in colonial and revolutionary American culture in everyday interactions beyond the printed page.

These advertisements also testify to the experiences of enslaved men, women, and children, though readers must consider that those experiences have been remediated through descriptions offered by slaveholders rather than the slaves themselves. Often unnamed in the advertisements, enslaved men, women, and children were not invisible or unimportant in early America.

These advertisements appeared in colonial American newspapers 250 years ago today.

Aug 31 1770 - New-London Gazette Slavery 1
New-London Gazette (August 31, 1770).

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Aug 31 1770 - New-London Gazette Slavery 2
New-London Gazette (August 31, 1770).

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Aug 31 1770 - New-London Gazette Slavery 3
New-London Gazette (August 31, 1770).

August 30

What was advertised in a colonial American newspaper 250 years ago today?

Aug 30 - 8:30:1770 Massachusetts Gazette and Boston Weekly News-Letter
Massachusetts Gazette and Boston Weekly News-Letter (August 30, 1770).

“They were all imported before the Non-Importation Agreement commenced.”

As fall approached in 1770, Richard Jennys ran advertisement for a “Variety of English, India and Scotch Goods” in the August 30 edition of the Massachusetts Gazette and Boston Weekly News-Letter.  He informed “his Customers and others” that he intended to sell his entire inventory “at the very lowest Rates.”  From “Black, white, and crimson plain Sattin” to “Very handsome Apron Gauz” to “Mens & Womens Hose,” Jennys promised bargains.

He also appended a short note about when these imported goods arrived in the colonies.  “They were all imported,” he declared, “before the Non-Importation Agreement commenced.”  The merchants and traders of Boston and other towns and cities throughout the colonies previously agreed to boycott imported goods in response to duties imposed on certain goods by the Townshend Acts.  They aimed to use economic leverage for political purposes, vowing not to import goods until Parliament repealed all of the duties.  Near the end of spring the residents of Boston received word that most of the duties had been repealed, tea excepted.  That left them in a quandary.  Having mostly achieved their goal, could they relent and resume importing?  Or, should the nonimportation pact remain in place until Parliament eliminated the duty on tea as well?  Merchants in New York very quickly reverted to their previous practices in May, but debates continued in Boston and Philadelphia.  The agreement remained in place in Philadelphia well into September and in Boston into October.

Jennys alerted prospective customers and the entire community that he continued to abide by the agreement while it remained in effect, but he advertisement also suggested that he suspected that trade would resume in the near future, that it was only a matter of time before Boston followed the example of New York.  One reason that he offered such low prices was his determination “to sell off his whole Stock in Trade this Fall.”  Jennys likely sought to clear out his inventory of goods imported quite some time earlier in order to make room for new goods that he anticipated would be arriving in Boston before the end of the year.  His advertisement demonstrated both political savvy and a practical approach to change that Jennys sensed coming.

Slavery Advertisements Published August 30, 1770

GUEST CURATOR: Chloe Amour

The Slavery Adverts 250 Project chronicles the role of newspaper advertising in perpetuating slavery in the era of the American Revolution. The project seeks to reveal the ubiquity of slavery in eighteenth-century life from New England to Georgia by republishing advertisements for slaves – for sale, wanted to purchase, runaways, captured fugitives – in daily digests on this site as well as in real time via the @SlaveAdverts250 Twitter feed, utilizing twenty-first-century media to stand in for the print media of the eighteenth century.

The project aims to provide modern audiences with a sense of just how often colonists encountered these advertisements in their daily lives. Enslaved men, women, and children appeared in print somewhere in the colonies almost every single day. Those advertisements served as a constant backdrop for social, cultural, economic, and political life in colonial and revolutionary America. Colonists who did not own slaves were still confronted with slavery as well as invited to maintain the system by purchasing slaves or assisting in the capture of runaways. The frequency of these newspaper advertisements suggests just how embedded slavery was in colonial and revolutionary American culture in everyday interactions beyond the printed page.

These advertisements also testify to the experiences of enslaved men, women, and children, though readers must consider that those experiences have been remediated through descriptions offered by slaveholders rather than the slaves themselves. Often unnamed in the advertisements, enslaved men, women, and children were not invisible or unimportant in early America.

These advertisements appeared in colonial American newspapers 250 years ago today.

Aug 30 1770 - Maryland Gazette Slavery 1
Maryland Gazette (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - Maryland Gazette Slavery 2
Maryland Gazette (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - Maryland Gazette Slavery 3
Maryland Gazette (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - Maryland Gazette Slavery 4
Maryland Gazette (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - Maryland Gazette Slavery 5
Maryland Gazette (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - Maryland Gazette Slavery 6
Maryland Gazette (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - Massachusetts Gazette and Boston Weekly News-Letter Slavery 1
Massachusetts Gazette and Boston Weekly News-Letter (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - Massachusetts Gazette and Boston Weekly News-Letter Slavery 2
Massachusetts Gazette and Boston Weekly News-Letter (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - New-York Journal Slavery 1
New-York Journal (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - New-York Journal Slavery 2
New-York Journal (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - Pennsylvania Gazette Slavery 1
Pennsylvania Gazette (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - Pennsylvania Gazette Slavery 2
Pennsylvania Gazette (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - Pennsylvania Gazette Supplement Slavery 1
Supplement to the Pennsylvania Gazette (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - Pennsylvania Gazette Supplement Slavery 2
Supplement to the Pennsylvania Gazette (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - Pennsylvania Journal Slavery 1
Pennsylvania Journal (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - Pennsylvania Journal Slavery 2
Pennsylvania Journal (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - South-Carolina Gazette Continuation Slavery 1
Continuation to the South-Carolina Gazette (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - South-Carolina Gazette Continuation Slavery 2
Continuation to the South-Carolina Gazette (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - South-Carolina Gazette Continuation Slavery 3
Continuation to the South-Carolina Gazette (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - South-Carolina Gazette Continuation Slavery 4
Continuation to the South-Carolina Gazette (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - South-Carolina Gazette Continuation Slavery 5
Continuation to the South-Carolina Gazette (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - South-Carolina Gazette Slavery 1
South-Carolina Gazette (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - South-Carolina Gazette Slavery 2
South-Carolina Gazette (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - South-Carolina Gazette Slavery 3
South-Carolina Gazette (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - South-Carolina Gazette Slavery 4
South-Carolina Gazette (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - Virginia Gazette Purdie & Dixon Slavery 1
Virginia Gazette [Purdie and Dixon] (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - Virginia Gazette Purdie & Dixon Slavery 2
Virginia Gazette [Purdie and Dixon] (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - Virginia Gazette Purdie & Dixon Slavery 3
Virginia Gazette [Purdie and Dixon] (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - Virginia Gazette Purdie & Dixon Slavery 4
Virginia Gazette [Purdie and Dixon] (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - Virginia Gazette Purdie & Dixon Slavery 5
Virginia Gazette [Purdie and Dixon] (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - Virginia Gazette Purdie & Dixon Slavery 6
Virginia Gazette [Purdie and Dixon] (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - Virginia Gazette Purdie & Dixon Slavery 7
Virginia Gazette [Purdie and Dixon] (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - Virginia Gazette Purdie & Dixon Slavery 8
Virginia Gazette [Purdie and Dixon] (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - Virginia Gazette Rind Slavery 1
Virginia Gazette [Rind] (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - Virginia Gazette Rind Slavery 2
Virginia Gazette [Rind] (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - Virginia Gazette Rind Slavery 3
Virginia Gazette [Rind] (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - Virginia Gazette Rind Slavery 4
Virginia Gazette [Rind] (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - Virginia Gazette Rind Slavery 5
Virginia Gazette [Rind] (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - Virginia Gazette Rind Slavery 6
Virginia Gazette [Rind] (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - Virginia Gazette Rind Slavery 7
Virginia Gazette [Rind] (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - Virginia Gazette Rind Slavery 8
Virginia Gazette [Rind] (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - Virginia Gazette Rind Slavery 9
Virginia Gazette [Rind] (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - Virginia Gazette Rind Slavery 10
Virginia Gazette [Rind] (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - Virginia Gazette Rind Slavery 11
Virginia Gazette [Rind] (August 30, 1770).

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Aug 30 1770 - Virginia Gazette Rind Slavery 12
Virginia Gazette [Rind] (August 30, 1770).

Welcome, Guest Curator Chloe Amour

Chloe Amour is a senior at Assumption University in Worcester, Massachusetts, where she is majoring in History with a minor in Education. She is from Holden, Massachusetts. Her interests in history include Colonial America, World War II, and the Vietnam War. Beyond history, Chloe is active on campus as a Resident Assistant, Campus Life Intern in the Office of Student Affairs, an Admissions Ambassador, and a Tutor in the Academic Support Center. She conducted the research for her contributions as guest curator for the Slavery Adverts 250 Project when she was enrolled in HIS 400 – Research Methods: Vast Early America in Spring 2020. Chloe is currently enrolled in an independent study for HIS 366 – Careers in Public History. Throughout that independent study, she will make additional contributions as she learns more about producing the project in addition to conducting research for it.

Welcome, guest curator Chloe Amour.

August 29

What was advertised in a colonial American newspaper 250 years ago this week?

Aug 29 - 8:27:1770 Boston-Gazette
Boston-Gazette (August 27, 1770).

They have Removed their PRINTING-OFFICE two Doors lower down Queen-Street.”

Colonial printers adopted various strategies when it came to inserting advertisements in their newspapers.  Some reserved advertisements for the final pages, appearing only after news items, editorials, lists of prices current, shipping news from the custom house, poems for amusement or edification, and other content selected by the editor rather than paid for inclusion by advertisers.  Others placed advertisements on the first and fourth pages, with other content on the second and third pages.  Doing so reflected practical aspects of producing newspapers.  Most consisted of four pages created by printing two pages on each side of a broadsheet and then folding it in half.  That meant the first and fourth pages were printed with one pull of the press and the second and third pages with another.  Advertisements, often repeated from week to week, could be printed first on the first and last pages, allowing for any breaking news to be set in type as late as possible before the second and third pages went to press.  Both of those methods kept advertisements clustered together, either at the end of an issue or bookending it.  Another method more evenly distributed advertising throughout the newspaper, placing advertisement on every page, often, but not always, at the bottom or in the final column.

For the August 27, 1770, edition of the Boston-Gazette, printers Benjamin Edes and John Gill included advertising on each of its four pages.  Advertisements constituted the first of three columns on the first page, but only a few short advertisements appeared at the bottom of the third column on the second page.  Advertisements accounted for half of the third page, but, like the second page, they ran after news content, sequestered at the bottom of the second column and in the third.  The fourth page consisted entirely of advertising, with the exception of the colophon at the bottom of the final column.  No matter which page they perused, readers encountered advertising in this edition of the Boston-Gazette.  In the midst of all those paid notices, Edes and Gill reserved a privileged place for an advertisement concerning their own business.  In the first item in the first column on the first page, “THE PUBLISHERS of this Paper” placed an advertisement to “hereby inform their Customers and others, That they have Removed their PRINTING-OFFICE two Doors lower down Queen-Street, to the House formerly improv’d by Messieurs Kneeland & Green, directly opposite the new Court-House.”  Edes and Gill exercised their power as printers of the Boston-Gazette and their access to the press to increase the chances that readers would see and take note of their advertisement.  Other advertisers paid for access to the press, but they usually had little control over where their advertisements appeared in the newspaper.  When it came to the placement of advertisements within newspapers, printers had an advantage that “their Customers and others” did not.

August 28

What was advertised in a colonial American newspaper 250 years ago today?

Aug 28 - 8:28:1770 Essex Gazette
Essex Gazette (August 28, 1770).

“Still believing the former Piece to be more agreeable to Truth than the latter.”

When Joseph Symonds, Joseph Hobbs, and Joseph Hobbs, Jr., placed an advertisement in the August 28, 1770, edition of the Essex Gazette, they depended on readers being familiar with a series of advertisements that previously appeared in that newspaper.  In the first, Addison Richardson accused “an Apprentice Lad, named Samuel Hobbs” of running away and taking a box “containing sundry Articles of Cloathing.”  Richardson had already recovered the box.  He warned others “to be very cautious in having any Concern” with the apprentice.

In an unusual turn of events, Hobbs placed his own advertisement to respond.  Usually runaways either did not have the resources to respond in print or chose not to draw additional attention to themselves by doing so.  Hobbs, however, sought to set the record straight, declaring that he “was not bound” to Richardson or “under any Obligation to live with him any longer than we could agree,” that the box and most of its contents did not belong to Richardson, and that his purported master had not treated him well during “almost five Years Service.”  Symonds, Hobbs, and Hobbs, all relations of the alleged runaway, signed a short addendum stating that they believed the young man’s account to be “real Truth” and encouraged that “the Publick will take no Notice.”

In turn, Richardson published yet another advertisement, this time masquerading as “SA——EL H—BBS.”  That notice paralleled the format of the one placed by Hobbs, offering an alternate version of events that corrected what Richardson considered inaccuracies in the clarifications that Hobbs offered the public.  Richardson-as-H—BBS also pointed out that “two Uncles and a Brother” of the apprentice might not be the most reliable witnesses in the dispute.  In order to continue the parallel format, he concluded the advertisement with a short declaration about having “Reason to believe the Piece above to be real Truth” and signed it “A. RICHARDSON.”

Two weeks later, Symonds, Hobbs, and Hobbs placed an advertisement of their own accord.  Just in case any readers were confused about whether Samuel Hobbs was responsible for the notice signed by SA——EL H—BBS, they proclaimed that it “was not put in by him, for he did not know any Thing of it.”  They also reported that some accommodation had been reached:  Mr. Richardson hath returned the Box, with what was in it, and offered to cloath [Hobbs] honorably if he will come and live with him again.”  Seeing this as a satisfactory outcome, the uncles and brother decided to “forbear, and say no more,” though they opined that Richardson would “be very cautious how he advertises Runaways for the future.”  As a parting shot, they stated that the advertisement by the real Hobbs was “more agreeable to Truth” than the one by Richardson-as-H—BBS, “and not merely because the Boy told us so neither.”  Even after accommodation had been reached, these three men sought to clarify which version of events was more accurate.

Buying space in the local newspaper gave Richardson, Hobbs, and Hobbs’s relations opportunities to shape the narrative of what transpired between master and apprentice in the summer of 1770.  Rather than working out their disagreements among themselves, they put their dispute on display before the general public, each attempting to convince the community that they were in the right and someone else behaved poorly.  These advertisements amplified gossip and word-of-mouth reports of the discord between Hobbs and Richardson.

Slavery Advertisements Published August 28, 1770

The Slavery Adverts 250 Project chronicles the role of newspaper advertising in perpetuating slavery in the era of the American Revolution. The project seeks to reveal the ubiquity of slavery in eighteenth-century life from New England to Georgia by republishing advertisements for slaves – for sale, wanted to purchase, runaways, captured fugitives – in daily digests on this site as well as in real time via the @SlaveAdverts250 Twitter feed, utilizing twenty-first-century media to stand in for the print media of the eighteenth century.

The project aims to provide modern audiences with a sense of just how often colonists encountered these advertisements in their daily lives. Enslaved men, women, and children appeared in print somewhere in the colonies almost every single day. Those advertisements served as a constant backdrop for social, cultural, economic, and political life in colonial and revolutionary America. Colonists who did not own slaves were still confronted with slavery as well as invited to maintain the system by purchasing slaves or assisting in the capture of runaways. The frequency of these newspaper advertisements suggests just how embedded slavery was in colonial and revolutionary American culture in everyday interactions beyond the printed page.

These advertisements also testify to the experiences of enslaved men, women, and children, though readers must consider that those experiences have been remediated through descriptions offered by slaveholders rather than the slaves themselves. Often unnamed in the advertisements, enslaved men, women, and children were not invisible or unimportant in early America.

These advertisements appeared in colonial American newspapers 250 years ago today.

Aug 28 1770 - Essex Gazette Slavery 1
Essex Gazette (August 28, 1770).

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Aug 28 1770 - Essex Gazette Slavery 2
Essex Gazette (August 28, 1770).

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Aug 28 1770 - Essex Gazette Slavery 3
Essex Gazette (August 28, 1770).

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Aug 28 1770 - South-Carolina Gazette and Country Journal Slavery 1
South-Carolina Gazette and Country Journal (August 28, 1770).

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Aug 28 1770 - South-Carolina Gazette and Country Journal Slavery 2
South-Carolina Gazette and Country Journal (August 28, 1770).

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Aug 28 1770 - South-Carolina Gazette and Country Journal Slavery 3
South-Carolina Gazette and Country Journal (August 28, 1770).

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Aug 28 1770 - South-Carolina Gazette and Country Journal Slavery 4
South-Carolina Gazette and Country Journal (August 28, 1770).

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Aug 28 1770 - South-Carolina Gazette and Country Journal Slavery 5
South-Carolina Gazette and Country Journal (August 28, 1770).

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Aug 28 1770 - South-Carolina Gazette and Country Journal Slavery 6
South-Carolina Gazette and Country Journal (August 28, 1770).

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Aug 28 1770 - South-Carolina Gazette and Country Journal Slavery 7
South-Carolina Gazette and Country Journal (August 28, 1770).

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Aug 28 1770 - South-Carolina Gazette and Country Journal Slavery 8
South-Carolina Gazette and Country Journal (August 28, 1770).

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Aug 28 1770 - South-Carolina Gazette and Country Journal Slavery 9
South-Carolina Gazette and Country Journal (August 28, 1770).

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Aug 28 1770 - South-Carolina Gazette and Country Journal Supplement Slavery 1
Supplement to the South-Carolina Gazette and Country Journal (August 28, 1770).

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Aug 28 1770 - South-Carolina Gazette and Country Journal Supplement Slavery 2
Supplement to the South-Carolina Gazette and Country Journal (August 28, 1770).

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Aug 28 1770 - South-Carolina Gazette and Country Journal Supplement Slavery 3
Supplement to the South-Carolina Gazette and Country Journal (August 28, 1770).

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Aug 28 1770 - South-Carolina Gazette and Country Journal Supplement Slavery 4
Supplement to the South-Carolina Gazette and Country Journal (August 28, 1770).

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Aug 28 1770 - South-Carolina Gazette and Country Journal Supplement Slavery 5
Supplement to the South-Carolina Gazette and Country Journal (August 28, 1770).

August 27

What was advertised in a colonial American newspaper 250 years ago today?

Aug 27 - 8:27:1770 Pennsylvania Chronicle
Pennsylvania Chronicle (August 27, 1770).

“I took Dr. Weed’s Syrup for the Bloody Flux, which gave me immediate ease.”

An advertisement for “Dr. Weed’s Syrup and Powder for the Bloody Flux” in the August 27, 1770, edition of the Pennsylvania Chronicle consisted almost entirely of testimonials.  One after another, four patients who had taken the elixir described how it had cured them.  For instance, Margaret Lee testified, “FOR the good of those who are afflicted with the Bloody Flux, I would inform them that I was lately seized with the disorder, and had it very bad; but by taking Dr. Weed’s Syrup and Powder for the Bloody Flux, according to directions, I found immediate ease and by repeating it a few times was perfectly cured.”  Each of the testimonials was dated within the past month, making them current endorsements of the nostrum.

Except for a headline that read “To the PUBLIC,” the advertisement did not include any additional information, not even instructions about where to purchase Dr. Weed’s Syrup and Powder for the Bloody Flux.  George Weed apparently did not believe that such details were necessary given his stature in the community and long experience serving residents of Philadelphia.  Dr. Weed’s Syrup and Powder for the Bloody Flux was not a mass-produced patent medicine imported from across the Atlantic.  It did not bear the name of a physician or apothecary famous throughout the British Empire.  Instead, Weed prepared his syrup and powder in Philadelphia and sought to cultivate local and regional acclaim for those medicines.  In an advertisement he placed in the Pennsylvania Gazette three years earlier, he touted his thirty of experience, including “the last seven Years of which he served in the Pennsylvania Hospital” where he “attended to all the Administrations of Medicine, and Chirurgical Operations in that Infirmary.”  Even though Philadelphia was the largest city in the colonies in 1770, it was still a small enough town that Weed could assume that readers of the Pennsylvania Chronicle either already knew of him or could easily learn more by asking their acquaintances.  Whether or not that was the case, Weed gambled on making an impression by devoting his entire advertisement to testimonials and trusting that his reputation would do the rest of the work necessary to direct prospective patients to his shop.

Slavery Advertisements Published August 27, 1770

The Slavery Adverts 250 Project chronicles the role of newspaper advertising in perpetuating slavery in the era of the American Revolution. The project seeks to reveal the ubiquity of slavery in eighteenth-century life from New England to Georgia by republishing advertisements for slaves – for sale, wanted to purchase, runaways, captured fugitives – in daily digests on this site as well as in real time via the @SlaveAdverts250 Twitter feed, utilizing twenty-first-century media to stand in for the print media of the eighteenth century.

The project aims to provide modern audiences with a sense of just how often colonists encountered these advertisements in their daily lives. Enslaved men, women, and children appeared in print somewhere in the colonies almost every single day. Those advertisements served as a constant backdrop for social, cultural, economic, and political life in colonial and revolutionary America. Colonists who did not own slaves were still confronted with slavery as well as invited to maintain the system by purchasing slaves or assisting in the capture of runaways. The frequency of these newspaper advertisements suggests just how embedded slavery was in colonial and revolutionary American culture in everyday interactions beyond the printed page.

These advertisements also testify to the experiences of enslaved men, women, and children, though readers must consider that those experiences have been remediated through descriptions offered by slaveholders rather than the slaves themselves. Often unnamed in the advertisements, enslaved men, women, and children were not invisible or unimportant in early America.

These advertisements appeared in colonial American newspapers 250 years ago today.

Aug 27 1770 - Boston Evening-Post Slavery 1
Boston Evening-Post (August 27, 1770).

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Aug 27 1770 - Boston-Gazette Slavery 1
Boston-Gazette (August 27, 1770).

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Aug 27 1770 - Boston-Gazette Slavery 2
Boston-Gazette (August 27, 1770).

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Aug 27 1770 - Connecticut Courant Slavery 1
Connecticut Courant (August 27, 1770).

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Aug 27 1770 - New-York Gazette and Weekly Mercury Slavery 1
New-York Gazette and Weekly Mercury (August 27, 1770).

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Aug 27 1770 - New-York Gazette and Weekly Mercury Supplement Slavery 1
Supplement to the New-York Gazette and Weekly Mercury (August 27, 1770).

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Aug 27 1770 - New-York Gazette and Weekly Mercury Supplement Slavery 2
Supplement to the New-York Gazette and Weekly Mercury (August 27, 1770).

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Aug 27 1770 - Newport Mercury Slavery 1
Newport Mercury (August 27, 1770).

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Aug 27 1770 - South-Carolina and American General Gazette Slavery 1
South-Carolina and American General Gazette (August 27, 1770).

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Aug 27 1770 - South-Carolina and American General Gazette Slavery 2
South-Carolina and American General Gazette (August 27, 1770).

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Aug 27 1770 - South-Carolina and American General Gazette Slavery 3
South-Carolina and American General Gazette (August 27, 1770).